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Toomey Cosponsors PRINT Act to Provide Relief to US Newspapers From Tariffs

May 29, 2018

Allentown, Pa. - U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) has cosponsored legislation that would suspend destructive taxes inflicted on the newspaper and publishing industries until the economic health of the industries is examined.

In August 2017, the Commerce Department and International Trade Commission (ITC) began an antidumping investigation of uncoated groundwood (UGW) paper from Canada in response to the concerns of one domestic paper manufacturer. Commerce has since made a positive determination and is now forcing American newspapers and publishers that purchase UGW paper to pay duties of up to 32 percent. The U.S. is a net importer of UGW paper, so it relies on imports to satisfy demand, and Commerce's action will have a severe impact on the publishing industry, potentially causing higher prices for subscribers, fewer jobs, and reduced circulation figures.

The bipartisan Protecting Rational Incentives in Newsprint Trade Act of 2018 (PRINT Act) calls on the U.S. Department of Commerce to suspend the collection of duties and to conduct a study into the economic health of the U.S. newspaper and publishing industries. Following the completion of this study, the president would be required to review the study and certify that such a tax on imported UGW paper is in the best interest of the country.

"American companies must be allowed to adequately and fairly source materials, especially when those items are not produced domestically," said Senator Toomey. "The newspaper and publishing industries are facing unprecedented challenges and the tax on UGW paper could spell the end of numerous publishers across Pennsylvania. As the Commerce Department and ITC continue their investigation, we want to ensure that this tax is actually warranted and necessary before imposing such a detrimental financial burden on downstream industries."

In addition to Senator Toomey, the PRINT Act is sponsored by Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Angus King (I-Maine), as well as Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Doug Jones (D-Ala.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), and Michael Enzi (R-Wyo.).